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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby smitch » Mon Jul 27, 2020 8:32 pm

I have access to that journal, Sue. If you want a copy of the article let me know.

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby Stokey Sue » Mon Jul 27, 2020 8:47 pm

Inflammation has got a lot more complicated than when I first studied it, and I don't think I've caught up with it completely

What they are talking about is being able to find markers of inflammation in the blood although there's no obvious inflammation like an injury.

The markers they looked at were 2 proteins called interleukin-17 and C-reactive protein (CRP) which are released in when the immune system is responding to tissue damage. These tend to be present in higher amounts older people even if they have no obvious point of inflammation. Probably, the lower the better, as their presence suggests some damage even if not obvious,

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby jeral » Mon Jul 27, 2020 9:21 pm

Right, thanks. Although if there might be damage that's not obvious, wouldn't it be better if reactive immuno proteins were aplenty, either anew or in readiness, to do their work so that damage is cured/controlled before it deteriorates enough to become obvious? More a musing than a question. Humans as a race do have a tendency to "cure" one problem only to create another; unintended consequences. Hey ho. I imagine an obligatory pill is a long way off.

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby Stokey Sue » Mon Jul 27, 2020 10:22 pm

No, these two only happen if there's already some damage, there are other things there on standby, like fire fighter

I'm sufficiently arthritic to wonder what the heck my CRP level would be (biochemist pronounce it creep, gives me a Radiohead earworm)

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby Pampy » Tue Jul 28, 2020 12:54 am

jeral wrote:... as Med-border countries and all of France seem almost obsessive about cheese.

I certainly wouldn't describe Italy or Spain as being "obsessive" about cheese, nor any north African countries, or Israel, Lebanon, Syria, Albania, Croatia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina etc.

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby Rainbow » Tue Jul 28, 2020 5:29 am

I thought the Mediterranean diet had been talked about and recommended for quite a few years now. Not necessarily defined in detail, but lots of veggies, not much meat and lots of olive oil, if I remember correctly.

Stokey Sue wrote:Inflammation has got a lot more complicated than when I first studied it, and I don't think I've caught up with it completely

What they are talking about is being able to find markers of inflammation in the blood although there's no obvious inflammation like an injury.


Yes, I agree Sue. Inflammation comes up in lots of articles I've read, often when the gut biome is being discussed, and I'm not really sure about it. But it's always mentioned as a bad thing and getting worse with age!!

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby Stokey Sue » Tue Jul 28, 2020 12:29 pm

I think there’s certainly an implication that if the body is generating CRP it’s doing it because there are damaged cells somewhere, but whether it’s really important is not clear to me at least

The Mediterranean diet has been around a long time, based on the work of Ancel Keys who mainly focused on southern Italy, in particular the village of Pioppi where people live a long time but if you see the book the Pioppi Diet please ignore it, nothing to do with Keys and largely rubbish, as are many magazine articles

Jeral, I think the French obsession with cheese is largely a British perception, they make many different cheeses and Le fromage is often eaten as a separate course but they don’t use nearly as much cheese in cooking and for snacks as we do in my experience so it evens out

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby jeral » Tue Jul 28, 2020 4:56 pm

Of the subjects both intervention and neutral, I'd love there to be done a post-result questionnaire as to how stress might have affected them, the usual things like moving house, bereavement, job loss, existing health worries, money concerns and incidence of appliance breakdowns (car, boiler, fridge etc).

However, the underlying logic pertains, that if one eats better and thus ought to be healthier, then one should be more likely to cope with life's troubles rather than internalising.

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby Stokey Sue » Tue Jul 28, 2020 5:07 pm

They have published about 40 papers, some of them on cognitive function so I expect there’s stress in there somewhere, but no point administering those questionnaires months after the event

In other news, Boris is waging war on obesity and trying to curb junk food advertising while simultaneously encouraging us all to eat in chain restaurants to improve the economy, so improving his diet does not seem to have improved his cognitive function.

I’ve been unimpressed by both government guidance and reporting by the media, in fact I made a formal complaint to the BBC Anyone seen anything interesting?

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby Earthmaiden » Tue Jul 28, 2020 6:02 pm

Madness isn't it Sue!

Did I hear correctly on the radio earlier that the govt is about to release a 12 week diet plan for the nation? :?.

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby karadekoolaid » Tue Jul 28, 2020 9:02 pm

On the Covid-19 front, I don´t think any government in the world has got it right. Some might have, but it was probably luck rather than careful strategy. Those who didn´t; well look at them now. the USA , which has scoffed at using masks, is averaging 56,000 cases every day. Brazil, whose president believes the virus is a joke, is averaging 40,400 per day. India has got out of control with 41,000 cases per day and the glorious soviet socialist republic of Venezuela is now registering 4-500 cases a day after almost 4 months of single figures, and rising. In the underdeveloped countries of the world the medical infrastructure is totally incapable of managing a crisis like this. There will be many, many more deaths and some severe economic consequences.
As for obesity - well there´s another conundrum . How do you oblige people to eat less?? One might think that it´s just a problem for developed countries (and yes, the USA, Canada, New Zealand and Australia are in the top 50)but there are also serious statistics for Middle-Eastern countries ( Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Iraq - all in the top 40) and surprisingly, Mexico (44) Argentina (45) and Chile (47). The strain on health services, for all sorts of reasons, must be incredible.
The least obese countries in the world are mostly from south-east Asia and Japan. Perhaps we should all adapt to their cuisines? 8-)
What is needed is a campaign akin to the draconian measures taken against smokers, 25-30 years ago. That worked. But how do you roll out something like that ? A really tricky question (and one which I have no intention of trying to answer!).

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby Stokey Sue » Tue Jul 28, 2020 9:37 pm

The thing is, we don’t actually know why people are so fat; obviously they are eating ore calories than they need but that’s so simplistic as to be entirely unhelpful

I, and a number of people I know, am overweight. All of us understand basic nutrition and and can cook, none of us eat significant “junk food” “fast food“ or “ultra-processed” food (whatever that is, there is no definition that is agreed by anyone except a few extremists). I eat very little sugar or sweet food. I walk everywhere. I’m typical of many people and frankly we don’t know what to do

What is not needed in my view is draconian measures similar to those used for smoking.

Smoking was dead easy - it was a single issue, people smoked, smoking had no benefits other than transient pleasure, and it could be removed from people’s lives.

We don’t want people to stop eating, it’s not good for them. Overweight is multifactorial and probably only a sub-set of the factors apply to each individual. If we apply “draconian measures” without a better understanding of the causes of the current problems and the possible solutions what is likely to happen is a major increase in eating disorders and a minor decrease in obesity.

Fat load of good that would do the NHS!

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby karadekoolaid » Wed Jul 29, 2020 2:16 am

Yes, I agree - there´s no easy way to say "So and so is obese" as we did when "so and so is a smoker" and there are multiple reasons for people being overweight, as you point out.However, overweight is one thing and obesity is another. My B-I-L is obese. He´s only 5´9" and weighs almost 20 stone. When he goes out for a "meal" his order is usually the biggest hamburger on the menu, and he´ll also polish off anything my sis doesnt eat.My sis is probably a bit overweight, even though she eats like a sparrow, but that´s because she´s had knee / hip problems for years.
I didn´t explain the "draconian" anti-smoking campaign idea very well. What I should have said was that the constant, interminable, negative comments on smoking, backed up by convincing scientific and medical evidence and then social measures as well, made those who smoked almost social pariahs. Curiously enough I was working in Philip Morris at the time ( I´d given up before joining) and the pressure was intense. A campaign which hammered on about the negative health consequences, plus the medical evidence, might certainly be more effective than blaming it all on fast food or whatever.
How, though, do you persuade a considerable proportion of the population that eating 3 Big Macs is not advisable but a Salade Nicoise and a poached chicken breast (for example) is? How do you persuade a population brought up on cakes, buns, puddings,sandwiches,crisps,pies and chips that they should eat more "healthy" options? It´s a really tough area, isn´t it?

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby Stokey Sue » Wed Jul 29, 2020 9:56 am

I think the psychology is interesting, complicated, and entirely outside my field of expertise or even experience

But my understanding is that “fat shaming” as a strategy doesn’t work and would not be compatible with medical ethics anyway, assuming we are involving the NHS. Again, real risk of triggering a bunch of eating disorders. Surely your brother in law already knows he’s too big and should stop eating so much? But he doesn’t, he’d probably need quite serious counselling to do so because his mind and body are set in that way.

The junk food is another thing as well. George Orwell wrote in the 30s about cheap chocolate bars and sweet tea making the working poor at least feel they’d had some kind of a treat every day and not much has changed. Again, no idea how you switch people away from these habits.

Nice to have a proper discussion even if we aren’t coming up with the answers :thumbsup

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby Badger's Mate » Wed Jul 29, 2020 10:08 am

I feel there's no real point in demonising or venerating particular foods or food groups. Otherwise you end up with cheese being confiscated from children's lunches at school or almond kernels promoted as a cure for cancer. Clearly diet is part of the problem, exercise is another but it's way more than that, food policy, commerce, socioeconomics, culture, education and many more, the list goes on. However, we must never lose sight of the fact that although it's more than calories, the laws of thermodynamics still apply.

Definitions of obesity vary, in SE Asia I understand it's BMI >25. BMI is not perfect but is a simple method that is useful if operated sensibly. I'm lucky, being weedy, in the sense that nobody would ever say I was overweight but if I carried the same proportion of fat on a normal frame I might be borderline, and my whole attitude would be different. It's not fair, someone more chunky would have a different experience.

This being Britain though, there's bound to be snobbery involved. People shouldn't be shamed for buying a packet of biscuits, whether they like a digestive with their tea or if they intend to put them in a food bank.

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby PatsyMFagan » Wed Jul 29, 2020 10:28 am

Just to bring this to a more personal level.... several years ago, my partner at the time and I both weighed the same: 11.5 stone, however, he was just over 6 ft tall and I was 5'2" . He didn't have an ounce of fat on him, whilst I had plenty to spare. My joke at the time was that I was the right weight, but the wrong height.

Now, I am probably weigh more than that, but I eat well, definitely too much good food; no junk or processed food, I exercise regularly but the sums say that I am taking in more calories than I am using. On the other hand, my weekend man friend, the same age as me, does no exercise, eats only bought processed meals, drinks every night, but again, doesn't have an ounce of spare fat on him. He sees no reason to change his lifestyle, saying he is grateful he has reached the 3 score years and 10 milestone and that every year now is a bonus. My attitude is that I want to live a healthy old age. ......

Edited to add - he is an ex smoker with perfect blood pressure! :o :roll:
Last edited by PatsyMFagan on Wed Jul 29, 2020 12:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby dennispc » Wed Jul 29, 2020 10:47 am

Going back a bit

I thought the Mediterranean diet had been talked about and recommended for quite a few years now


Exactly my thoughts on first reading, but perhaps I’d missed something, so gave it another go. Came up with the one positive as I mentioned, but didn’t think it added to my limited knowledge. The paper itself gives reference to many studies, Tim Spector, having tried every diet, has settled on the Med Diet.

Probably we eat more meat than the traditional Med one, but get close. The tourist bits of Croatia provided some sort of insight, but local knowledge helping us in Symi, meant a week’s healthy eating. Not so easy to keep to it back home. But one thing I noticed - the amount of smoking, including in kitchens of restaurants!

In terms of general health and what’s good for us, here’s a quote from, Even Vegans Die,

UK professor, vegan activist Laura Wright in 2014 blog posted … “I’ve grown to believe that none of us … know what makes us or breaks us.”

And now back to the weight issue. PM is reported to be producing a 12 week menu plan for the country. If it’s true I can’t wait to see the reaction on here! My BMI is 28, but have eaten and done the right thing for many years. GP is happy.

What is needed is a customised plan, including preventative health checks, that part of the cohort received, and geared to food that is perceived as affordable. Also needed is preventative health care.

Eventually not smoking became acceptable as did seats belts and not drinking and driving. It will probably take as long for obesity to be less of a problem.



.

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby Earthmaiden » Wed Jul 29, 2020 4:48 pm

As has been said, smoking, seatbelt wearing etc are one habit to learn to change or give up. It isn't feasible to give up eating and the issues are complex.

We've come so far down the road away from set mealtimes and breaks, sitting round a table to eat, eating only wholesome food, eating balanced meals in front of each other without feeling guilt, making eating special, valuing the cook. We've traded them for busy 24/7 hours where eating is a secondary activity, where to get really hungry and then devouring the whole of the Macdonalds menu in a car and is normal, where one feels guilt for eating anything instead of enjoying small amounts of nourishment, where eating in the street has become acceptable. We've allowed the huge processed food companies and Slimming Worlds to take over our lives and make millions while families and farmers struggle.

I'm delighted that Boris Johnson wants to put all this right. He'll certainly lose a few cronies along the way but I look forward to the results.

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby dennispc » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:22 am

I hope he gets it right, according to a letter in Thursday’s Times, his BMI when he went into hospital was 36.2, now 33, to get to 25, top of the ‘ideal’ range he needs to lose another 3st 13lbs. A haircut should do it.

The same edition carried an article on “Percy Pig and the truth about ‘healthy’ sugars". M&S Percy Pigs have 21.1g of sugar per quarter-bag serving (42.5g). Emily apple fruit crisps have 19.2g of sugar per 30g packet.

The rest of the article is worth a read especially about labelling, but I can’t access it online.

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Re: Healthy Eating

Postby Stokey Sue » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:41 am

We had a bit of a discussion of Percy Pigs on the Food in the news thread

Henry Dimbleby, who is looking into healthy eating on behalf of us all, has a bit of a thing about Percy Pig, or rather about misleading labelling in which “natural” sweet stuff such as concentrated fruit juice, agave nectar, or honey is added to something and it’s claimed to be more “healthy” than if refined cane or beet sucrose had been added

Here’s the Guardian article again, which is not paywalled
https://www.theguardian.com/food/2020/j ... SApp_Other

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